Muscle pulling on bone builds bone, so weight-bearing exercise builds denser, stronger bones. The more bone mass you build before age of 30, the better off you will be during the later years. Menopause, which usually happens around age 51, dramatically speeds up bone loss. Even during peri-menopause (the period of 2 to 8 years before menopause), your estrogen levels may start to drop off, leading to increased bone loss. Over time, too much bone loss can first cause osteopenia (low bone mass) and then osteoporosis. Weight-bearing exercise and a diet high in vegetables and fruit can help you maintain bone density later in life and prevent the risk of low trauma fracture.

Anthony Sebastian M.D., Professor Emeritus of Nephrology at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), led a research team that published in 2001 a survey of worldwide fracture rates. His group correlated fractures to all the countries’ consumption of animal and plant protein. As the intake of vegetables and fruit rises, the rate of hip fracture falls. If you wish to build bone make these two rules your guiding light: Do weight bearing exercise three days a week and eat three servings of vegetables and/or fruit at every meal.

Weight-bearing exercise programs are available at Crows Nest Clinical Pilates and Physiotherapy.

Call Karen Rook Mphty., PhD., Physiotherapist for more information on: 0405 321 775


Sellmeyer DE, Stone KL, Sebastian A, Cummings SR. A high ratio of dietary animal to vegetable protein increases the rate of bone loss and the risk of fracture in postmenopausal women. Study of Osteoporotic Fractures Research Group. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 2001 Jan; 73(1):118-22.